The Calhoun Police Department took out warrants for multiple charges after a driver fled from a traffic stop and then disappeared with a backpack after ditching a rental vehicle.
According to CPD records, warrants have been filed for the arrest of Cornelius Banks, 38, of 17 Sandy Beach Terrace N.W., Rome.
He is facing charges of improper right turn, failure to maintain lane, speeding, reckless driving, failure to use turn signal, driving on the wrong side of the road, driving through gore, striking fixed object, fleeing and attempting to elude, obstruction of officer, failure to obey traffic control device, open container, possession of dangerous drug and drugs not in original container.
Police say Banks sped away from a traffic stop in speeds excessive of 100 mph, broke several traffic laws while driving into oncoming traffic, and then ditched the rental vehicle he was driving before fleeing on foot with a backpack, leaving an open beer and a bag of erectile dysfunction medication behind.
The event began at about 7:20 p.m. on Monday when an officer pulled over Banks in a rented Kia Optima on the Interstate 75 on-ramp off of Red Bud Road for making an illegal turn. The officer could smell marijuana inside the vehicle and observed an open container of beer in the floorboard of the passenger side.
The officer asked Banks to exit the vehicle, but he refused. A passenger did get out of the car and agreed to a search of his person. He told the officer he had about $1,800 cash in his pocket.
The officer then approached Banks again and asked him to take off his seatbelt before Banks drove away onto I-75 South. Police gave chase and Banks drove off the interstate at Highway 53, at one point losing control of the car and striking and then crossing the raised median. He continued driving east on Highway 53 into on-coming traffic.
The officer temporarily lost sight of the vehicle while turning around, then found it at the Redroof Motel on Jameson Street. Witnesses pointed the officer toward the back of the motel, and he and his K-9 partner tracked Banks for about half a mile but did not find him. Other officers and Georgia State Patrol troopers also joined in the search.
Back at the vehicle, witnesses told officers Banks had run off with a backpack. Inside the car, the officer found an open beer and a clear plastic baggie with six blue pills labeled "SC 100," believed to be Sildenafil, which is an erectile dysfunction medication.
The passenger told police he did not know why Banks ran and that the beer and pills belonged to Banks. He was released. Warrants were taken out for Banks.